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Student development and support

Self-photo 4

Chair: Dr Jeanette du Plessis
(Central University of Technology)


Dr Nokuthula Tlalajoe-Mokhatla
(Univeristy of the Free State)

Dr Pamela Pillay
(University of KwaZulu Natal)

Vision and MIssion

Our vision is to enhance student development and support, thus contributing towards the academic success of students in health sciences education programmes. Our mission is to facilitate communication and sharing of expertise among colleagues ultimately enhancing student learning and student retention. The SIG aims to provide a platform in which health professions educationalists can engage and share expertise in the field of student development and support.

The objectives of the SIG are:

• Establish membership by recruiting health professional educationists from different institutions to be part of the SIG

• Develop a strategy to engage in student development and support

• Develop mechanisms that will allow each member to contribute according to their different expertise/skills in the field of student development and support.

• Liaise with other higher education structures/programmes that share an interest in student development and support


Unlike other students at higher education institutions, students studying in health sciences education programmes have unique challenges. Therefore, they do not only require the generic support provided to any other university students but require specialised and context-specific development and support. For example, these students must manage a high academic workload in which they are expected to integrate and apply pre- and clinical knowledge This is very challenging for most students. Therefore, the establishment of the SAAHE SIG can enable colleagues/academics and experts who have a special interest in developing and supporting students to engage. Such a structure will enable the sharing


• The first action will be to recruit members from other institutions. Each member of the management team will be assigned the role of contacting stakeholders in the institutions.

• Secondly, the management team will organise a virtual meeting to introduce and orientate recruited members of the SIG

• Thirdly, the members will organise a virtual event in the form of a seminar in which members discuss their institutional student development and support programmes/structures/strategies

• Organise and have a meeting during the SAAHE conference.

To join any of our SIG’s and obtain SAAHE membership, please complete the membership form